“From this point of view, living organisms inherit not only genes but also morphic fields. The genes are passed on materially from their ancestors...:the morphic fields re inherited non-materially, by morphic resonance, not just from direct ancestors but also from other members of the species. The developing organism tunes into the morphic fields of its species and thus draws upon a pooled or collective memory.”
This is a complex theory which is difficult to condense into a few lines. It is the parallel of the mystical “Egregore” of the Rosicrucians, “Group Mind” of Alice Bailey, the “Sphere” of Dion Fortune, and the “Critical Mass” of James Redfield . It is also the explanation for the phenomenon of the “Hundredth Monkey”.
Again, we have an example of science demonstrating what mysticism already knows. For anyone interested, Rupert Sheldrake’s books are very readable so I will not endeavour to explain his theories in any further detail here.